About Deputy Dogs
Deputy Dogs is a program through the non-profit organization Compassionate Cops. The program encourages residents and their pets to watch for suspicious activity while out on their daily walks and report it to local law enforcement.
The idea is if you see something, say something. You can help keep our community safe.
The program grew out of the rescue of an abused dog named Chance. After Chance recovered from major injuries, he became a Deputy Dog. As part of the Deputy Dogs program, Chance and other dogs help educate people about animal abuse and encourage people to report suspicious activity.
Deputy Dogs also educates youth on important safety information through books, coloring books, posters and other methods. It also works closely with the Lee County Sheriff's Office and Sheriff Carmine Marceno, who has made animal cruelty one of his top initiatives.
"I have a zero tolerance stance on any kind of abuse."
— Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno
The Deputy Dogs pack now includes more than a dozen active canines as well as hundreds of dogs in the community registered for the program.
Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno with Deputy Chance (Right) and Lt. Bosco.
Members of Our Pack
Sergeant Rich Castellon
Sergeant Richard Castellon joined the Lee County Sheriff's Office in 2013 after an extensive service record including a CAT II top secret security clearance while assigned to 8 & I Marine Barracks in the United States Marine Corps.
In 2003, Castellon was employed as a police officer within the Miami police department, where he became certified as a K9 Decoy with the Miami-Dade K9 Training Center in 2007. In that same year, Castellon became qualified by the International Forensics Research Institute as an explosive K9 detection team member.
While working for the City of Miami, he was assigned K9 Diesel who was FDLE certified for patrol and explosives. He worked alongside K9 Diesel for eight years.
The U.S. Police Canine Association certified Castellon as a "Police Dog 1" in 2010 and 2012. The K9 team was tested and certified during a 6 day trial of obedience exercises, criminal apprehension, and article searching.
Shortly after, the Jimmy Rice Foundation gave him a bloodhound named Legacy. Legacy and Staff Officer Castellon worked hand-in-hand to assist law enforcement with incidents that occurred county-wide.
From 2006 through 2013, Castellon has trained and certified more than 100 K9 teams under FDLE in the Dade County Metropolitan area. Castellon was also deployed to several high risk K9 perimeter searches including suspects and officer involved shooting throughout the Dade and Brauer county areas. As a K9 trainer/handler, he has the responsibility as the acting K9 liaison between an agency and the incident command.
Prior to his current assignment as Deputy Chance's handler, he served as a K9 handler with our Youth Services Division. Today, he uses his qualifications to help rehabilitate Deputy Chance as a liaison for the Lee County Sheriff's Office.
Lt. Bosco has been on the force for 4 months as the Commander of the Deputy Dogs Pets on Patrol Program. Here, she assigns patrols, signs certificates, takes photos, and sends cards to kids that are in the hospital. Lt. Bosco weighs 7.9lbs and is specially trained in covert operations. She used these skills recently in the arrest of Renegade Roger the Rabbit.
This caught fugitive was known for devouring fresh vegetables out of the Farmer's Market. Thanks to Bosco, Deputy Chance was able to pounce on Roger and assist Chance in the arrest of Roger the Rabbit. He currently resides at the Farmer's Market.
Deputy Chance has served for the Lee County Sheriff’s Office for 5 months as the leader of the Deputy Dogs Pets on Patrol Program. He was found abused outside of Lehigh Acres and was later adopted by the Lee County Sheriff’s Office.
Chance’s main initiative is to prevent animal abuse in all of Lee County. Sheriff Carmine Marceno has made Chance the new advocate for animal cruelty and he has been present for all Lee County and Lee County School District events. His ultimate goal is to end animal abuse around the globe.
Mercy & Maggie
With an estimated 230 million olfactory cells…40 times the number found in humans…the Bloodhound has the ability to track human scent over incredible distances and, often, days after the scent was left. The human olfactory center is the approximate size of a postage stamp; the Bloodhound’s is the size of a handkerchief.
Humans shed approximately 40,000 skin “rafts” per minute. These rafts are made up of skin cells, hygiene products, bacteria, fungus, parasites, sweat, hormones, and enzymes. Having a remarkable ability to sniff an article, read terrain and follow the scent of skin rafts, the Bloodhound’s abilities make their tracking results admissible in court.
Once the Bloodhound identifies the trail, it will not divert its attention despite other scents and odors. It is only when the dog locates the source of the scent, or when it reaches a point at which it is unable to continue, will it stop tracking. Bloodhounds have been known to stick to a trail for more than 130 miles.”